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Abstract

Drawing on Nahapiet and Ghoshal's (1998) distinction between the structural, relational, and cognitive dimensions of social capital, this paper analyses the performance of Water Communities (WCs) in the Bregalnica region of the Republic of Macedonia. WCs are farmer-managed local irrigation systems which are critical to livelihoods in Bregalnica. Data on the performance of the WCs and role of social capital was collected via in-depth interviews and a farm survey (n=249) of both members and non-members. Results highlight the importance of social capital in explaining the decision to join a WC, the satisfaction of members with their WC, and payment behaviour.

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